WERL Passive Irrigation Controller Wins at ISHOW 2020
ASME Innovation Showcase, June 23, 2020

3D PPE Initiative Recognized by the Government of Ontario
WERL has produced over 1000 face shield components for the initiative, and sincerely thanks the 3D PPE GTHA team for organizing this initiative!

Fish Farming Technology from CGEN Wins Global Invention Competition
Tyler Irving, U of T Engineering News, June 24, 2019

Changing the Face of Engineering
Amy Bilton, Mary Wells, and Veronica Knott on The Agenda with Steve Paiken, Oct. 3, 2017

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About WERL

The Water and Energy Research Laboratory (WERL) researches innovative engineering solutions for water and energy needs around the world.  This includes designing and optimizing technologies that can aid sustainable development in unique global contexts.  WERL is part of the department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) at the University of Toronto.

Professor Amy Bilton

WERL is directed by professor Amy Bilton, who is an assistant professor in MIE at U of T. She is also the director of the Centre for Global Engineering (CGEN), which leads initiatives that address challenges in food, water, sanitation, healthcare, and energy around the world.

Research Projects

Design and Optimization of Pico-Scale Hydro Turbines
This project has been outsourced to WERL by a Toronto-based company that is currently developing innovative pico-scale hydro turbine systems, used for energy harvesting in both water disinfection and pressure regulation applications. In the disinfection system, a generator coupled to the pico-turbine provides power to an electrochemical cell appropriate for drinking water disinfection. The system is …

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Development of Smart and Sustainable Aeration Technology
During the past several decades, overfishing has made wild capture fisheries unsustainable. As an alternative, aquaculture has grown rapidly with an average annual rate of 8.7% since 1970 [1]. In the Asia-Pacific region, over 18 million people engage in fish and prawn farming [2], the majority of which are individual entrepreneurs or families who manage …

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Ocean Current Energy Conversion for Powering Sensors
Many organizations which conduct oceanographic research, such as CSIRO, make use of electronic sensors for monitoring ocean conditions. At present, these sensors are powered by batteries, but this causes their deployment time to be limited by battery life. This limitation could potentially be overcome by harvesting energy from the environments surrounding the sensors. One such …

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Oil Sands Tailing Water Treatment System
Dissolute and emulsified (PM 10) organic compounds are one of the hazardous contaminations and represent a significant removal challenge in oil sands tailings treatment. Even with widely adopted technologies such as biological and membrane treatment methods, the effective removal is lower due to their small size and lower concentration. It is hypothesized that oil droplets …

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Passive Irrigation Controller
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations calculates that agricultural irrigation consumes 70 percent of our global fresh water supply, they further express that 60 percent of that water is then wasted before it is used by crops. An important cause of water waste is the inappropriate scheduling of the irrigation periods leading to …

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Photovoltaic Reverse Osmosis Systems
For many remote off-grid communities, the lack of access to reliable electricity and clean water is a challenge for their economic development Designing and implementing community owned and operated power generation alternatives and water systems is a step towards autonomy Water purification systems powered by renewable energy need to be cost competitive in order to …

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Solar Aeration System for Aquaculture
Aquaculture is a major food source in many low and middle-income countries (LMICs). Improving water quality for aquaculture can increase yields, improve food security, and reduce antibiotic use. In the developed world, aeration is used to significantly improve water quality. However, aeration is the third largest cost in aquaculture, limiting its use in LMICs. In …

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Water and Energy Research Laboratory

Mailing Address

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto
5 King’s College Rd
Toronto ON M5S 3G8





RS 108A

MY 794